When looking for a decent recurve bow, it can often be very confusion to know which one is best. There are so many different choices and if you are new to the world of archery, you want to make sure you are getting a suitable bow. The aim of this buyers guide is to help simplify it for you by showing you what things to look out for when buying a recurve bow.
It can be very hard to say which is the best recurve bow as there are so many different things you need to consider when buying one. You need to take into account things such as the size of the bow, the draw weight, the style you want. Its also important to take into account what you are using the bow for, is it target archery, mounted archery or even bow hunting.
The Archery Guide has reviewed and even used in many cases a number of different recurve bows. These recommendations should help to make it clearer to know which is the best recurve bow for you.
There are so many different bows and if you just want to find the most recommended, the table below will help show that. Below is a quick overview of the top 3, you can find a more detailed overview of the recurve bows further down the article.
As mentioned when looking for a recurve bow, whether your a beginner and it’s your first one or you are more experienced and looking for an upgrade. We are all after different things but there are a few things we need to consider when making a purchase. I have gone into more detail on these below to help you learn what you should consider when looking for that perfect bow.
Pricing is a very important aspect, as we all have different budgets. You also need to consider your needs, if you are new then you might not initially buy the most expensive bow. It’s only natural that you do want the best recurve bow but that does not always mean the most expensive.
All of the recommended bows on this page can be found on Amazon and they usually do offer very good pricing. I have also marked in the above comparison its price range and in the more detailed reviews below, I have pointed out those that are ideal for anyone on a budget.
Draw weight is the amount of strength that is needed to pull the string back and hold it whilst aiming. It is therefore important to make sure you find your draw weight before purchasing a bow. If you do get a bow that is too heavy and harder to pull, you will struggle to get your shot and it will make your technique suffer.
The key is therefore to find a bow that you can comfortable pull back. The more you do archery you will find your upper body strength will increase and therefore your draw weight will also go up. If you get a bow that allows you to change the limbs then you will be able to change them so you will be able to add draw weight (meaning you don’t have to buy a whole new recurve bow!)
What you plan on using the bow for will also impact on what draw weight you might want to look at getting. If you plan on going bow hunting, you need to be able to fire the arrow so that it gets a killing shot - which means you might end up going for a higher draw weight.
With target archery you don’t have to go to high with the draw weight, although you will want something that is at least 25 lbs if going for 70m targets. A youth will normally be able to use bows with a draw weight of 10-20, a average women’s is 25-35 and the average mans is 40-50.
Another thing you need to consider is what bow you should get in terms of left handed or right handed. Just because you are right handed, doesn’t mean you should get a right handed bow. You should get a bow that is dependent on your eye dominance. If you left eye is stronger and your right handed, you might prefer to get a left handed bow as your aim could potentially be better.
Interestingly many beginners do hold the bow in the wrong hand. If you are right handed then you would actually hold the bow in your left hand, but use your right hand to draw the bow.
It can be confusing when you see bow size/length. The draw length is basically the amount of distance between the nock point and the grip, with an extra 1 ¾ inches. Its very important to find the right draw length, you can read more about it here. To quickly explain how to do it, simply extend your arm span which is fingertip to fingertip and then divide this by 2.5.
When you buy a recurve bow it will have a bow size in inches, this is also the same length as the string. If you ever need to replace the string then you know if your bow is 60”, you need to get the same length string.
Have a think about what accessories you might want to use on your bow. The riser is either in wood or metal, with wood normally being a little cheaper. Accessories will use holes in the riser to attach such as sights and stabilisers. Metal ones will come with these pre-drilled, however some wooden ones may not.
If you plan to add accessories then it might be worth making sure they have the required holes in them, to avoid having to drill them yourself.
When shooting your bow, whether target archery or when hunting, you will be holding the bow for some time. You therefore need to make sure the overall weight of the bow is not too much. Most bows are fairly lightweight, but just bear that in mind when picking a bow.
I personally feel that the way the bow looks is important when buying it. It could tick all of the boxes but if I don’t like the way it looks, why would I buy it? It is going to be a personal choice on if you like the look of it or not, but one that you should take into consideration.
Bows can take up a lot of space and even more so when you take the string off, therefore many people opt for a takedown recurve bow. Many can be put together without any kind of tools and can be easily stored in a case. If your space is limited then it might be worth thinking about a take down.
Usually take downs can also be upgraded because the limbs can be replaced. This is often useful when you outgrow a bow or need increased draw weight. The benefit of this is that you can simply upgrade your current recurve bow and you wont need to buy a new one.
Something I often look at when buying anything and not just a bow is the warranty. Since you will be hopefully using your recurve bow often, you want to be sure it is covered for any issues outside of your control. Usually the warranty will cover the riser and the limbs of the bow but not the strings and arrow rests, this is normally because they do wear over time.
Normally the only reason the riser or limbs break is because of a quality issue. It’s worth noting that the warranty period is normally for a set period of time, which would depend on the individual manufacture.
There are some things that could void a warranty such as drilling your own accessory holes and even firing the bow without arrows (dry-firing) - all things you should avoid doing.
If you are looking for a recurve bow that is great quality and not too expensive, the Spyder Takedown bow is perfect. Online it has said to be a more improved version of the Samick Sage, interestingly it was designed by those that actually engineered the Sage.
One thing that really impressed me was the comfort of the bow, it felt incredible to shoot from which makes it ideal for beginners as well as more experienced archers. The Spyder Recurve bow is lightweight at only 2.8 lbs and is a decent sized bow at 62 inches.
There are a number of draw weights available from 20-60 pounds and the limbs can be changed. It is a little more expensive than the Samick Sage but The Spyder is a very good option if you have a little more to spend.
Great bow for beginners, hunters and those looking for the next step up from a typical beginner bow
The Samick Sage recurve bow is a great choice, it is low in cost when compared to alternatives and is perfect for both target archery and hunting. If you are new to archery then it makes for a great beginner bow, although more skilled archers do also recommend it as a very good bow.
It is a takedown bow, which means as you develop in archery you can upgrade the limbs to account for increased skill and strength. In terms of upgrades you don’t need any tools for this recurve bow to upgrade it, which is ideal.
The Samick Sage bow is available in a wide range of draw weights and has a version for both left and right handed archers.
I like the feel of this recurve bow in my hands, the grip feels completely natural. It has a arrow rest which makes it much easier for beginners to shoot from. I personally prefer not to use accessories but the riser does come with pre-drilled holes, allowing you to add additional accessories required.
All in all this is a perfect bow for a beginner and even someone with some experience.
I personally love the way the spirit Jr looks, the white really makes it stand out. This recurve bow is perfect for young archers that are getting into archery, its durable and a decent weight to hold. The bow itself is easy to string and as its a takedown bow, it gives children an introduction on good care and maintenance.
The bow is a decent size but not too big at 54 inches with 16-22 pounds worth of draw weight. If I was to get into archery as a child, I would have loved this junior recurve bow. Its very easy to shoot from and has decent grip for small hands.
The only downside that I can really see from this bow is that it is only available to right handed archers, which to me is a real shame! Even though it does have this negative, if you are looking for a decent youth recurve bow then this would be perfect!
The SAS Courage is a low cost hunting recurve bow, although it can still be used by target archers. It does look good but is limited on its ability to be upgraded when you do look at other recurve bows.
There is a good range of draw weights from 35 - 60 lbs, as the name shows it has a bow length of 60”. There are left and right handed bows available so it does cater for all types of archers, which is a great.
One of the things I liked and that others have commented on is the amount of pull that is not need to actually draw the arrow. Another positive of this low cost bow is how easy it is to takedown and assemble again.
If you want a recurve bow that looks like a thing of beauty and history, the bear grizzly bow is just what you are looking for. I personally think it looks incredible, something I could imagine on my wall. A great thing about this bow is that it’s suitable for people of all skill levels, whether you are new or more experienced.
It’s not the cheapest bow but you are paying for quality as well as some great features. The bow is great whether you are looking to shoot targets or if you are looking for a hunting bow. The Bear Grizzly Recurve is low weight but at the same time offers some great accuracy.
One thing that impressed me was the noise that this bow produces...which is very little! This bow has been around for years and continues to be a top seller and recommended bow, simply because of its quality.